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LEED v4 Prerequisites Now Automatic for Projects Under CALGreen

All LEED v4 prerequisites and six credits are now automatic for many commercial projects meeting the CALGreen code.
Paula Melton
October 17, 2017

Projects like the LEED Platinum CalSTRS headquarters could have a much easier time getting certified under new LEED guidance.

Photo: Paul Housberg. License: CC BY 2.0.
Commercial buildings in California can now get a huge jumpstart on achieving LEED certification. New construction projects meeting certain requirements will enjoy streamlined documentation to achieve all LEED v4 Building Design and Construction (BD+C) prerequisites along with six optional credits, for a total of six automatic points. The move acknowledges significant overlaps between the voluntary LEED rating systems and the progressive energy and building codes in the state.

To qualify, buildings must be new, non-residential construction projects (not renovations or commercial interiors) subject to the California Energy Code and the CALGreen Code, and must register under LEED v4. USGBC has not yet released technical details explaining how documentation will be streamlined.

The credits to be awarded are:

The decision updates prior guidance by USGBC that allowed far fewer automatic prerequisites and a different set of credits for California projects.

“This alignment in LEED represents an evolution by the USGBC to better support and encourage green building code adoptions across the country,” said Wes Sullens, USGBC’s director of codes technical development, in an email announcement. “We hope that California’s leadership can showcase how a strong green building code helps fulfill the local and state goals as well as our mission to achieve green buildings for all.”

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We'll be watching for how this news affects LEED in the Golden State. LEEDuser has heard some anecdotes that projects in California have been feeling less motivated to pursue LEED, because project teams feel that CALGreen provides a high level of sustainability. If you're in California, are you feeling that? Does this news make LEED v4 more approachable for you?

For more information:

U.S. Green Building Council

Most of the content in this article originally appeared on BuildingGreen.com as California Code Scores LEED Points.


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